Last Updated: Monday, August 17, 2020

RAiSE - Raising Aspirations in Science Education

What is this?

​​This resource provides an overview of the Raising Aspirations in Science Education ​(RAiSE) programme and provides links to key documents including the evaluation of the RAiSE programme.

Who is this for?

​All practitioners, local authorities and partner organisations who have an interest in learning and teaching of science, technologies, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in primary settings and across the broad general education.

Explore this resource

What is RAiSE?

The Raising Aspirations in Science Education (RAiSE) programme enhances the confidence and skills of primary school practitioners to improve learning and teaching in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education.

It is a programme led by Education Scotland and funded by The Wood Foundation, Scottish Government and participating local authorities. The programme was established in 2016 as a pilot programme and has worked with 10 authorities to date through this. They are:

  • Angus Council
  • City of Edinburgh Council
  • Dumfries and Galloway Council
  • Fife Council
  • Glasgow City Council
  • Moray Council
  • North Ayrshire Council
  • South Ayrshire Council
  • The Highland Council
  • West Dunbartonshire Council

As a result of the positive external evaluation, we are pleased to announce a partnership with a further four local authorities in Autumn 2019:

  • Clackmannanshire Council
  • Falkirk Council
  • North Lanarkshire Council
  • Orkney Islands Council

How does it work?

Each of the participating RAiSE local authorities is provided with funding to recruit a dedicated Primary Science Development Officer (PSDO) to lead and co-ordinate high-quality professional learning and to support practitioner networking and collaboration.

The work of the RAiSE programme is strongly aligned to the STEM Education and Training Strategy and the Developing the Young Workforce Programme. It aims to raise attainment and achievement in primary science and STEM and tackle inequity and inequality in learners' experiences and in their potential to achieve.

What has happened so far?

Effective partnership working has been central to the success of the programme to date. Authorities have forged strong relationships with regional colleges, universities, SSERC, science centres, STEM Ambassador Hubs and other STEM providers to support local practitioners and schools with their STEM development.

Key Statistics

Number of practitioner engagements


Number of establishment engagements


Number of cluster engagements in RAISE activities


Number of RAiSE CLPL events


Cumulative RAiSE programme practitioner CLPL hours


What happens next?

The RAiSE pilot programme has been evaluated by the Robert Owen Centre for Educational Change at the University of Glasgow. The full evaluation report was published in May 2019 and can be found on this page. As a result of this positive evaluation, the programme will now be made available to all other local authorities across Scotland on a rolling basis.

Further information

PDF file: RAiSE Evaluation Summary (683 KB)

PDF file: RAiSE Final Evaluation Report (697 KB)

PDF file: Objectives of the RAiSE programme (273 KB)

For more information, contact Gayle Duffus, National Education Officer for Primary Science -

Latest RAiSE news

PDF file: RAiSE news - February 2019 - Pupils are STEM champs of Scotland's classrooms (127 KB)

PDF file: RAiSE news - March 2019 - STEM fair inspires 160 Lochaber children (162 KB)

PDF file: RAiSE news - January 2020 - Outdoor Learning event (542 KB)

PDF file: RAiSE news - May 2020 - Online science planning resource launched (118 KB)

PDF file: RAiSE news - June 2020 - RAiSE network providing vital online support to teachers delivering home learning (147 KB)

Case studies

PDF file: Linking Developing the Young Workforce and STEM (1.0 MB) - This will be of interest to all practitioners, STEM leads in school, and those establishments keen to forge STEM partnerships.

PDF file: Developing approaches to transition using Astrobiology (1.0 MB) - This case study will be of interest to primary and secondary school leaders, curriculum leaders, upper primary practitioners, secondary science teachers and university partners.

PDF file: Developing Primary STEM leaders (1.5 MB) - This case study is for practitioners and Senior Leadership Teams in the primary sector.

PDF file: Developing Parental Engagement (1.3 MB) - This case study will be of interest to primary practitioners who are considering approaches to developing parental engagement in their setting.

PDF file: Increasing Family Engagement in STEM (1.2 MB) - This case study will be of interest to staff considering running a Science/STEM Festival.

PDF file: Engineering Skills and Partnership Programmes (3.3 MB) - This case study will be of interest to primary schools who wish to develop a range of STEM skills and attributes through a strong focus on engineering tasks.